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Chionactis occipitalis

Scientific Name:Chionactis occipitalis
Common name:western shovel-nosed snake
Rank and Status   
Global Rank:G5 Native Status:Native
Subnational (State) Rank:S4 Endemic:No
US ESA Status:None Sand Dunes:No
NNHP Tracking Status:Watch List Wetland:No
Other Agency Status Status Last Updated Status Comments
Bureau of Land Management - Nevada Sensitive BLM Nevada Sensitive Species List dated 2017-10-01, specifically lists ssp. talpina and ssp. occipitalis
Nevada Wildlife Action Plan - 2012 Species of Conservation Priority
CCVI Score Moderately Vulnerable Conf. VH; Factors increasing vulnerability are natural and anthropogenic barriers, climate change mitigation, historical hydrological niche, and physical habitat.
Distribution (NV Counties)

Status: Predicted or probable

Clark Esmeralda Lincoln Nye
Summary Occurrence Data
Occurrence Count:7
Total Observed Area (hectares):Not Available
Maximum Known Elevation (m):1294
Minimum Known Elevation (m):850
Chionactis occipitalis data at NatureServe
Chionactis occipitalis photos and data at Encyclopedia of Life
Character Abstract
Identification Comments:
Subspecies Comments:
Food Habits:The western shovel-nosed snake feeds on various life stages of insects (larvae, pupae, and adults). Such insects include spiders, scorpions, and centipedes.
Phenology Comments:
Reproduction Comments:
Migration Mobility:
Habitat Comments:Habitat of this burrowing snake consists of sparsely vegetated (mesquite-creosote bush, desert grasses, cactus) desert, including rocky slopes, dunes, washes, and sandy flats (Stebbins 2003). Prefers flat areas with sandy soils.
Ecology comments:This snake is nocturnal. It has been observed on the surface during the day only a few times, usually coiled under a bush. Much of its activity is probably subterranean. It is active most of the year in the south and during the warmer months in the north and is non-migratory (Cowles 1941, Stebbins 1954). Snakes often lie just under the surface of the sand where they can be heated by the warmth of the sun without exposing themselves (Stebbins 1954). It breeds in the spring with an average of 2-4 eggs laid underground (Cowles 1941).
Version Date:11/02/1999 - 12:00am

Not Available